Four years after debuting with the lounge-primed Trip Tease, the duo of Dave Gardner and Tim Digullia—aka Tipsy—return with their sophomore set.
Four years after debuting with the lounge-primed Trip Tease, the duo of Dave Gardner and Tim Digullia—aka Tipsy—return with their sophomore set. Now, as then, Tipsy's sound is a signature amalgam of sampled exotica, with mock-Polynesian strings, vibraphones, and Hawaiian guitars punctuated by cartoon sound effects or the eerie wail of a theremin. The whimsical titles give some but not all of the game away: "Wig Out," "Eclipse of the Sun Virgin," and "Papaya Freeway" recall the golden age of Yma Sumac and fellow musical exoticians of the '50s. But beneath its camp veneer, Uh-Oh! boasts intricate song structures and a jazzy Brazilian flavor not evident on the first disc. This time out, the San Francisco-based group is aided by Tom Waits' horn player Ralph Carney and new-music percussionist William Winant. The smoking-jacket-and-matching-fez set has moved on to other things, but Tipsy continues to inhabit a delightfully skewed universe boundaried by the imaginations of Raymond Scott and Juan Garcia Esquivel.—RBH